Wednesday, August 10, 2011


I am hearing that the Value proposition is garbage for the Leaf. However I am not walking in that camp. I know the need for early adopters for the Electric Car but maybe it is some that are saying that it is needed. Others once again telling us what is and what will happen. I think the Leaf is a decent value even at the cost of $32,000 bucks. I have seen far too many conversions go well beyond that and they have fewer creature comforts than the Leaf. Even if the Leaf battery were to cost you $18000 you would have a fairly priced vehicle. We know the cost of a good pack of CALB's that will take you at freeway speeds for up to 100 and maybe 120 miles. Many of the cars that they are stuffed into are cramped cool looking fiberglass replicas. I'd not want to drive them more than 100 miles per day and I bet most never even see close to that. For us who can afford to buy over time the Value presents its self as a car I can get now. It will do what I need for my commuting which happens to be most of my driving anyway. It can be charged off our solar and it can haul a few folks around town if we need and have done. There is a place for the Focus Electric car and that happens to be in the realm of the common working man. Really. If you need a car and you have a second gasser for those occasional long trips then an all electric OEM may be the ticket. Many of us that want an electric can't build one and many frankly just don't have the time even if they can. One other drawback to DIY is no warranty to speak of. That is a tough one to swallow. I could go out and spend $35,000 easy on a DIY conversion and the next day have an accident and loose it all. No warranty and all you have is a pile of plastic. Don't get me wrong, I am all for the DIY but I don't think it is all the DIY folks that will be controlling the electric car business. Not by a long shot. Many of us don't have the skills to become the next OEM. And after all that is what it will become. Tesla has become another OEM with the help of an OEM. So it is no longer the DIY. It started that way but they guys had millions already to screw around with and they tested and built a Tesla. Well frankly if I had millions also to toss around I'd be doing just that. A few folks like the average JOE on the DIY or us that like or want a real viable electric car  can only dream of converting a nice porsche. Fiberglass VWs are not Porsches. Sorry but they are just VW's in plastic Porsche skins. Don't get me wrong there either. I am a die hard VW fanatic so I am all for the VW platform being a nice place to start for many wanting in to the electric car conversion scene. A basic Beetle in decent condition can be purchased for $3000 and then you can get your new suspension parts and electric car goodies and batteries (lithiums only here please) and then build one for a whopping $10k and maybe more. Mind you it is still an old vehicle so you must spend money on parts to bring it up to new or near new again. The cost will easy jump into the $20K or better. No air or safety features and many will loose the rear seating too. Fun, Yes. Value not really except that you get to build one and thumb your nose at OPEC.

So the Leaf actually does have value. More than likely the Leaf battery will last the life of the car or longer. Most of what is being talked about is nothing but hearsay and speculation on the part of those who know nothing at all about the inner workings of the OEM and what they chose for the battery system. I highly suspect it is far better than what is being talked about. Yes, parts replacement is high and so is parts replacements in an ICE vehicle. No different. It aint a free ride folks.

I actually like the Leaf and how it looks. Not a terrible car. Sure its not a Aston Martin but the price tag is not one either.

Take a ride in a Leaf and you may just change your mind. I agree that you can't portray the excellent qualities of an electric car in a picture or with words. You gotta get in one. You gotta get behind the wheel. You gotta get some some heavy foot on that throttle to see what it can do. You gotta hit that corner hard to feel what it can do in that tight turn. It is a pretty impressive vehicle. Not a tiny little fiberglass replica either. Plenty of value there.

Pete :)

My Rant.

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